When it comes to describing colors, the English language has a vast vocabulary. But even with so many color names at our disposal, it can still be challenging to find just the right term to accurately describe a specific shade or hue. So what are some good alternative words and phrases for the color that falls between purple and red on the color wheel? Let’s explore some options.
The Color Wheel
First, it helps to understand where purplish red sits on the color wheel. The color wheel arranges colors into a circle based on their hue and relationship to each other. Purple and red are opposite colors, meaning they are as far apart from each other as possible on the wheel. Halfway between them is a reddish purple or purplish red hue.
On a typical 12-part color wheel, this in-between shade is located around 330 degrees, just after pure red at 0 degrees and before pure purple at 360 degrees. The technical terms for these hues are roughly:
- 0 degrees – Red
- 330 degrees – Red-violet
- 360 degrees – Violet
So red-violet or just “violet” are good generic terms for a purplish red. But let’s look at some more descriptive alternatives.
Words Describing Purplish Reds
Here are some options for describing a reddish purple or purplish red color:
- Magenta – One of the primary colors in modern color systems along with cyan and yellow. A vivid purplish red.
- Fuchsia – A vivid reddish purple named after the fuchsia flower. Sometimes spelled fuschia.
- Cardinal – A vivid reddish purple named after the color of a Catholic Cardinal’s robes.
- Cranberry – A reddish purple reminiscent of cranberries. A bit lighter and less saturated than magenta.
- Ruby – A reddish purple gemstone color, deeper than pink but not as purple as magenta.
- Cerise – A bright reddish purple tinged with pink, like the cerise fruit.
- Mauve – A soft muted reddish purple with a grayish tinge.
- Mulberry – A muted reddish purple, darker than mauve.
- Maroon – A brick red tinged with purple or brown.
- Burgundy – A dark reddish purple, redder than eggplant.
- Eggplant – A dark purple with some red undertones.
- Berry – A vague term for a vivid reddish purple reminiscent of berries.
To help visualize the difference between some of these purplish red hues, here is a table comparing theirHEX color codes:
|Color Name||HEX Code|
As you can see, magenta and fuchsia are essentially the same vivid reddish purple. Ruby is a bit redder, cerise more pinkish, and mauve is much softer and paler. Burgundy is the deepest, darkest shade.
Uses of Purplish Reds
Now that we’ve explored some options, when might you want to use a word for a purplish red hue? Here are some examples:
- Describing paint, fabric, or carpet samples
- Talking about flowers like orchids, peonies, and hibiscus
- Discussing gemstones like rubies, garnets, tourmaline
- Describing wines like merlots and cabernets
- Analyzing works of art that use reddish purples
- Comparing digital images where color accuracy is important
- Creating detailed content for fashion and cosmetics products
Using specific color names can help readers visualize exactly the shade you have in mind. The next time you need to describe a color between purple and red, reference this guide to choose a fitting term.
Other Colorful Words
The English language is full of creative ways to describe colors. Beyond just basic color names, there are many inventive terms that capture the essence of specific hues. Here are some examples of more colorful color words:
- Vermillion – A brilliant scarlet red with an orange tinge
- Chartreuse – A vivid yellowish green
- Azure – A bright, deep sky blue
- Mauve – A soft purple with gray undertones
- Ecru – A pale beige shade, like unbleached fabric
- Cerulean – A serene, azure shade of blue
- Verdigris – A grayish green reminiscent of aged copper
- Carmine – A strong, crimson red
- Ochre – An earthy yellow-brown
- Teal – A bluish-green reminiscent of a duck’s neck
So don’t be afraid to get creative with color descriptions! Vivid terms can help the reader envision exactly the shade you have in mind.
Creating Color Names
Language is flexible, and new color names are coined all the time. Here are some tips for creating original terms to describe hard-to-name shades:
- Compare it to a familiar object – “Robin’s egg blue” or “avocado green”
- Describe its intensity – “pale lime” or “deep crimson”
- Reference a related color – “pinkish tan” or “greenish gray”
- Combine color words – “red-violet” or “blue-green”
- Evocative imagery – “sunset orange” or “midnight blue”
- Reference materials – “silver gray” or “bronze brown”
- Use creative suffixes – “greenish”, “bluish”, “reddish”
- Cite proper names – surnames like “Hunter green”
With so many colors and color combinations, there are endless possibilities for new terminology. Don’t be afraid to get creative and have fun with conjuring colorful phrases!
In summary, the English language contains a wide selection of words for purplish red hues like magenta, ruby, cerise, and burgundy. Creative color names can help precisely convey your meaning. So explore all the options when trying to describe that perfect purplish red!